amongst books

amongst books

Monday, July 25, 2011

Literary Reading Series in Ottawa

I am excited about upcoming readings and the coming fall literary season.

my ideal reading series

takes place in a well-ventilated room;
is physically accessible to all;
has excellent sound and light;
includes poetry and prose;
includes locals and non locals;
is funded, so able to pay features;
has no more than one hour of readings at a time;
takes place early on a weekday evening or on a weekend afternoon;
has a good site/blog that provides supplementary info about features;
advertises its events well in advance in order to provide for planning;
doesn’t charge a cover to the audience;
has a books table;
is fully plugged in to social media to create interest for the general public.

We have great literary reading series in Ottawa and they have their strengths and weaknesses. One of the main obstacles for me is late night starts, particularly on weekdays and long duration of reading.

I believe readings should last no more than one hour with time to socialize at the venue or at a nearby pub after. I believe that introductions should be kept to a minimum of a minute or two per reader. I enjoy open mics but they have to be strictly limited for time. Only a few series include all genres in their line ups.

I enjoy meeting writers I have long admired, and discovering new ones. I enjoy hearing people read their own work.

Here are our literary series in Ottawa. I am glad they exist.

For more information on these series, click on the links or go to and look at the calendar of events and links page.

A B Series
5th season starts with Stuart Ross & Peter Norman on Oct 1, 2011

above/ground & Factory Reading Series
Janice Williamson at Mother Tongue on July 27, 2011

blUe Mondays on summer haitus

Bywords Quarterly Journal Launches
John Newlove Poetry Award reading at the fall Ottawa International Writers Festival.
Fall launch at Collected Works on November 6, with music by Marie-Josee Houle.

Dusty Owl Reading Series
Storyteller Jan Andrews performs as part of Ottawa Pride on August 21

El Dorado, Ottawa's only multi-lingual reading series

In/Words Reading Series
Cameron Anstee is the feature on July 27, 2011

Plan 99 on summer hiatus

Sasquatch Literary Performance Series on summer hiatus

Tree Reading Series
Phil Hall is the feature on July 26, 2011

Voices of Venus
next season starts soon

also the Ottawa International Writers Festival which takes place in the spring and fall & VerseFest which takes place in the spring.

Also local bookstores such as Collected Works, Mother Tongue hold readings,
and the Raw Sugar Café and Venus Envy occasionally has readings.

If I am forgetting other literary series in Ottawa, please let me know.
& i'd be interested to know of what you think makes for a good literary series.


Susie Moloney said...

Hi Amanda!

Wow, just took a look at these readings in Ottawa and I'm just thrilled you posted. Your list of the perfect series is dead on, except I don't mind a late night and a bit of socializing.

Thanks for this!

Susie Moloney

Amanda said...

thanks Susie. & if you ever come to Ottawa to do a reading, let me know via events at bywords dot ca & i'll post it on the calendar.